Skip navigation

Criminal Investigators and Special Agents - 33-3021.03

O*NET-SOC Description

Investigate alleged or suspected criminal violations of Federal, state, or local laws to determine if evidence is sufficient to recommend prosecution.

Sample of Reported Job Titles

  • Agent
  • Criminal Investigator
  • Detective
  • Detective Sergeant
  • FBI Special Agent (Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent)
  • Investigator
  • Master Police Detective
  • Narcotics Detective
  • Police Detective
  • Special Agent

SOC Occupation Groups

33-0000 Protective Service Occupations
33-3000 Law Enforcement Workers
33-3020 Detectives and Criminal Investigators
33-3021.00 Detectives and Criminal Investigators
33-3021.03 Criminal Investigators and Special Agents

Related Occupations


  • Administer counterterrorism and counternarcotics reward programs.
  • Analyze evidence in laboratories or in the field.
  • Collaborate with other authorities on activities such as surveillance, transcription, and research.
  • Collaborate with other offices and agencies to exchange information and coordinate activities.
  • Collect and record physical information about arrested suspects, including fingerprints, height and weight measurements, and photographs.
  • Compare crime scene fingerprints with those from suspects or fingerprint files to identify perpetrators, using computers.
  • Determine scope, timing, and direction of investigations.
  • Develop relationships with informants to obtain information related to cases.
  • Examine records to locate links in chains of evidence or information.
  • Identify case issues and evidence needed, based on analysis of charges, complaints, or allegations of law violations.
  • Investigate organized crime, public corruption, financial crime, copyright infringement, civil rights violations, bank robbery, extortion, kidnapping, and other violations of federal or state statutes.
  • Issue security clearances.
  • Manage security programs designed to protect personnel, facilities, and information.
  • Obtain and use search and arrest warrants.
  • Obtain and verify evidence by interviewing and observing suspects and witnesses or by analyzing records.
  • Perform undercover assignments and maintain surveillance, including monitoring authorized wiretaps.
  • Prepare reports that detail investigation findings.
  • Provide protection for individuals, such as government leaders, political candidates, and visiting foreign dignitaries.
  • Record evidence and documents, using equipment such as cameras and photocopy machines.
  • Search for and collect evidence, such as fingerprints, using investigative equipment.
  • Serve subpoenas or other official papers.
  • Testify before grand juries concerning criminal activity investigations.

Detailed Work Activities

  • Analyze crime scene evidence.
  • Collaborate with law enforcement or security agencies to share information.
  • Collaborate with outside groups to develop programs or projects.
  • Determine operational procedures.
  • Direct law enforcement activities.
  • Direct security operations.
  • Examine crime scenes to obtain evidence.
  • Examine records or other types of data to investigate criminal activities.
  • Interview people to gather information about criminal activities.
  • Investigate accidents to determine causes.
  • Investigate illegal or suspicious activities.
  • Issue permits or other legal documents.
  • Maintain surveillance of individuals or establishments.
  • Observe individuals' activities to gather information or compile evidence.
  • Prepare investigation or incident reports.
  • Provide security escorts for officials, jury members, or other individuals.
  • Record crime or accident scene evidence with video or still cameras.
  • Record information about suspects or criminals.
  • Serve court ordered documents.
  • Testify at legal or legislative proceedings.
  • Use databases to locate investigation details or other information.

Military Crosswalk Titles

  • Chief Counterintelligence/Human Intelligence Sergeant (Army - Enlisted)
  • CID Special Agent (Army - Enlisted)
  • CID Special Agent (Army - Warrant Officer only)
  • Counter Intelligence Agent (Army - Enlisted)
  • Counterintelligence/Human Intelligence (CI/HUMINT) Specialist (Marine Corps - Enlisted)
  • Criminal Investigator CID Agent (Marine Corps - Enlisted)
  • Cryptologic Linguist (Army - Enlisted)
  • CWO - Intelligence (Navy - Warrant Officer only)
  • CWO - Security (Navy - Warrant Officer only)
  • Explosive Ordnance Disposal (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Technician (Marine Corps - Enlisted)
  • Explosive Ordnance Disposal Apprentice (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Explosive Ordnance Disposal Craftsman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Explosive Ordnance Disposal Helper (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Explosive Ordnance Disposal Journeyman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Explosive Ordnance Disposal Superintendent (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Forensic Psycho-physiologist (Polygraph Examiner) (Marine Corps - Enlisted)
  • Human Intelligence Collector (Army - Enlisted)
  • Intelligence Specialist (Marine Corps - Enlisted)
  • Intelligence Specialist (Navy - Enlisted)
  • Investigator (Coast Guard - Enlisted)
  • LDO - Intelligence (Navy - Commissioned Officer only)
  • LDO - Security (Navy - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Master-At-Arms (Navy - Enlisted)
  • Military Investigator (Navy - Enlisted)
  • Military Police (Army - Enlisted)
  • Military Police (Marine Corps - Enlisted)
  • Operations Intelligence (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Operations Intelligence Apprentice (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Operations Intelligence Craftsman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Operations Intelligence Helper (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Operations Intelligence Journeyman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • RL - Special Duty Officer - Intelligence Officer (Navy - Commissioned Officer only)
  • Security Forces (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Security Forces Apprentice (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Security Forces Apprentice, Combat Arms (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Security Forces Apprentice, Military Working Dog Handler (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Security Forces Craftsman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Security Forces Helper (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Security Forces Helper, Combat Arms (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Security Forces Helper, Military Working Dog Handler (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Security Forces Journeyman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Security Forces Journeyman, Combat Arms (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Security Forces Journeyman, Military Working Dog Handler (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Security Forces Superintendent (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) Senior Sergeant/SIGINT Chief (Army - Enlisted)
  • Signals Intelligence Analyst (Army - Enlisted)
  • Special Forces Assistant Operations and Intelligence Sergeant (Army - Enlisted)
  • Special Forces Weapons Sergeant (Army - Enlisted)
  • Special Investigations (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Special Investigations Craftsman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Special Investigations Helper (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Special Investigations Journeyman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Special Investigations Superintendent (Air Force - Enlisted)

Apprenticeship Crosswalk Titles

No information available.

DOT Crosswalk Titles

  • Child Support Officer
  • Identification Officer
  • Police Officer III
  • Special Agent